"A&E care"

About: Knowsley Resource & Recovery Centre Whiston Hospital

(as the patient),

I was taken to A&E at Whiston in the early hours of Saturday morning by a friend, because of a self-inflicted injury and small overdose.

Firstly, the care I received was good on the whole. My wound was stitched well and I didn't have to wait long to be assessed by a psychiatrist.

The friend who took me to A&E was mistaken by staff as my mum. She stressed that this was not the relationship between us.

The first assessment with the psychiatrist was not clear - having taken too many sleeping tablets and other meds, I was in no fit state to make sense of anything. I was taken to the obs ward to sleep it off.

After 12 hours I was assessed again. I have to say, the psychiatrist who spoke to me the second time was very good and understanding. He was in no way judgemental, dismissive and he clearly cared.

When I was discharged the staff at A&E phoned my friend to let her know - I'm not sure this was appropriate and I had not asked for them to do this. I'm unsure as to why they called her to tell her that?

On the whole, the staff treated me well. The only thing I could have benefitted from was advice on what to do with my stitched up arm. All I was told was the stitches need to come out in 7 days. In the meantime I was not told if I need to change the dressing, keep it dry, see my GP. I was not told of signs of infection in case the wound becomes infected, or whether i would need painkillers. I don't know if it is normal for it to hurt as much as it does etc. So advice on follow up care could have been improved. I also think it's important that staff should establish the relationship between the person presenting to A&E and the person accomanying them. My friend was told quite a bit of information because they presumed she was my mum.

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Response from Dennis Dewar, PALS Co-ordinator, 5 Boroughs Partnership NHS Trust

As a representative from the 5 Boroughs Partnership, which provides the mental health services and psychiatrists to Whiston Hospital I'm glad that this part of your care went well. It's nice to hear that the psychiatrist who saw you was understanding and showed that he cared. I'll pass your comments on to him as I'm sure he'll be pleased to hear them.

I can't comment on anything else that happened in A&E as it's a different NHS Trust to us. I've spoken to the PALS in the Whiston Hospital, their job is to help support anyone who has any concerns at all about any service they provide. If you would like to call them their number is 0151 430 1655.

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